The Siamese cat has a cream-colored base coat with colored points on their noses, ears, paws, lower legs and tails.
The pointed pattern is a form of partial albinism, resulting from a tyrosinase mutation, an enzyme involved in the production of melanin. The mutated enzyme is heat sensitive and only occurs on the colder parts of the cat’s body.
All Siamese kittens are born pure cream or pure white at birth and develop their first points at a few months of age. Siamese cats tend to darken with age and those living in a warm climate are lighter than those living in a cold climate.
Siamese cats can have a seal coat, which is an extremely dark brown color although some can be born with a blue point look. There can be chocolate points and lilac points, which are pale warm gray color, which is a genetically diluted chocolate color. Outcrosses with other breeds have lead to red point Siamese, lynx point and tortoise-shell point Siamese.
In the UK all pointed Siamese-style cats are considered to be part of the Siamese breed; however, in the US, only the original seal point, blue point, chocolate point, and lilac point are recognized as being Siamese.
The Siamese cat has an almond-shaped, bright blue eye and short, flat-lying coats. Many Siamese cats from Thailand had a kink in their tails; however, over the years, this trait has largely been eradicated. Early Siamese cats were cross-eyed due to a gene that was the same as the one causing the albino trait. This trait has largely been bred out of the species.